Following Monday’s selection of Vanderbilt shortstop Dansby Swanson with the no. 1 overall pick in the 2015 MLB Draft — along with 43rd overall selection of TCU pitcher Alex Young in the second round — the Arizona Diamondbacks added eight more prospects to their ranks Tuesday.
Through two days, the D-backs have drafted collegiate players with each of their first 10 picks, five of which being right-handed pitchers.
In fact, with their first four picks on Tuesday, the D-backs selected right-handed hurlers in succession.
With their first pick of the day coming in the third round, the D-backs selected Taylor Clarke out of the College of Charleston. Named a Louisville Slugger First-Team All-American this past season, Clarke compiled a 13-1 record with a 1.73 ERA and 17 strikeouts in 114.1 IP. Ranked tied for first among all NCAA Division I pitchers in wins, Clarke also ranked third nationally in strikeouts.
In the fourth round, the D-backs pulled the trigger on Missouri’s Breckin Williams, a Second-Team All-SEC honoree who posted a 4-4 record with a 1.98 ERA and 39 strikeouts in 25 relief appearances for the Tigers. Williams’ 13 saves this past season also set a school record.
Local product Ryan Burr of Arizona State and Tyler Mark of Concordia University in Irvine, California represented the D-backs fifth and sixth round selections, respectively. Burr earned All-Pac 12 accolades in three seasons with the Sun Devils, setting the school’s career saves record with 38. Mark, on the other hand, rolled to a 5-1 record with a 1.24 ERA in 38 relief appearances in 2015, setting an NAIA single-season record with 24 saves.
Arizona rounded out their pitching haul when they took Pierce Romero out of Santa Barbara City College in the ninth round. Currently committed to pitch at the University of Nebraska next season, Romero posted modest numbers at SBCC, tallying a 2-0 record despite a 5.50 ERA.
The D-backs used three of their final four selections Tuesday on non-pitching talent. In the seventh round, Palomar College catcher Francis Christy was the D-backs’ first offensive selection since taking Swanson with the no. 1 pick. Hitting .326 with 12 doubles, 11 home runs and 52 RBI in 45 games, Christy earned recognition as the Rawlings National Community College co-Player of the Year in 2015.
Kennesaw State infielder Kal Simmons and UNLV outfielder Joey Armstrong completed the D-backs’ day when they were selected in the eighth and 10th rounds, respectively. Simmons, a Louisville Slugger First-Team Freshman All-American in 2013, belted 10 homers and 35 RBI in 55 games this past season for the Owls, earning All-Atlantic Sun Conference honors for a third straight season. Armstrong, a Mountain West Preseason All-American entering the season, hit .277 with nine doubles, two home runs, 26 RBI, eight stolen bases and 34 runs scored for the Rebels.